Today I came across the receipt for the ring and journal I bought on my visit to the museum with my Mom. When I looked at the date, I was surprised that it was before my separation from Mr. Mess. I remember that day as a defining moment of sorts. I did something that I enjoyed, just for myself. I spent hours talking with my Mom and immersing myself in history. I laughed freely. I recall that the weather was beautiful. We sat in the sun and ate lunch. I was happy. Truly, simply happy.
Maybe that’s why I thought I was already separated. In the warm, fuzzy memory I have of that day, everything was right with the world. I actually had to come to my blog and look up the post to convince myself the date was correct. Re-reading my words made me realize that I may as well have been separated by then. I was already emotionally divorcing myself from the lies and drama. Suddenly, I had an urge to write that I haven’t for a while. I started an “update” on the post itself, but decided instead that a new post was in order.
Now that I’m here, writing for you all again after months of silence, I realize that I don’t have anything particularly insightful to say. I still have the ring. I don’t wear it that much because it is big and girlish and rather gaudy. I love it, though. When I look at it, I smile. I let myself be gaudy and girlish. I run my fingers over the cool stones that form petals on a white flower with pearls in the center. I think of the sun, of laughter, of art and history and time with my Mom. He doesn’t even enter my mind. The memory of the pain and hurt and betrayal and emotional manipulation isn’t lingering there in the corner at all.
Maybe that is the important thing I have to say: the pain goes away. Moments of true happiness were rare for years. I carried the weight of that unhealthy relationship around, dragging it behind me when it got too heavy. The burden became so commonplace that I was sure I’d have it with me forever. That day I didn’t, though, even if only for a few hours. Now I’ve left it so far behind that it doesn’t cross my mind unless some small reminder jumps out and jogs a memory. When that happens, instead of being painful it makes me smile. It reminds me of the considerable distance I’ve put between that version of myself and the one I am today.
These days I have happy moments all the time. I have warm, fuzzy days full of laughter. I am watching great movies, classics that I never saw and newer films by excellent directors I never heard of before. I am learning about craft beer and “real” watches and designer shoes. I actually cook, and sometimes what I cook is really quite good. I’m going to have a herb garden soon (I’m going to a class with my Mom on Monday). I am happy. Truly, simply happy, more often than not. I smile and sing and love the life I’m living. Today I have on the perfect outfit for that big, gaudy, girly ring. I wish I had put it on this morning. I suppose I’ll have to wear the sentiment it evokes in me instead.